CCA-Sponsored Bills Signed into Law by Governor Newsom
Last Monday, Governor Gavin Newsom announced that he had signed into law two CCA-sponsored bills, Assembly Bill 2415 (Lackey) and Senate Bill 880 (Laird).
CCA-sponsored SB 880 permanently reauthorizes University of California Cooperative Extension water measurement instructional courses. These courses enable ranchers who divert more than 100 acre-feet per year to self-certify as “qualified individuals” for purposes of installing and maintaining legally mandated water measurement devices. Initially authorized by CCA-sponsored AB 589 (Bigelow, 2017), the courses allow water diverters to avoid thousands of dollars in costs associated with hiring professional engineers and contractors.
CCA-sponsored AB 2415 extends by three years – until January 1, 2026 – the agricultural vehicle exemption to the California Highway Patrol’s Basic Inspection of Terminals program, which would otherwise require costly, invasive and time-consuming vehicle inspections despite the shining safety record of California’s agricultural fleet. The exemption was initially secured by a 2016 bill also sponsored by CCA and authored by Asm. Lackey, AB 1960.
CCA thanks Senator Laird and Assemblyman Lackey for authoring these bills and working to ensure they became law, and we applaud Governor Newsom for signing them into law. For more information, see CCA’s August 30 press release.
Newsom Declares Wildfire Emergency in Siskiyou County Due to Mill Fire
On Friday, Governor Newsom issued a proclamation declaring a state of emergency in Siskiyou County due to the Mill Fire. As of this morning, the Mill Fire has burned 4,263 acres and is 55% contained. Sadly, the blaze has taken two lives, injured three and has destroyed more than 100 structures.
According to a press release from the Governor’s office, the state has secured a Fire Management Assistance Grant (FMAG) from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which “will enable local, state and tribal agencies responding to the fire to apply for 75-percent reimbursement” for fire suppression costs.
The Governor’s office announced this morning that the state has also obtained an FMAG for fire suppression activities relating to the Fairview Fire in Riverside County (though no state of emergency has yet been proclaimed for that blaze). As of this morning, the Fairview Fire had burned 2,400 acres and was only 5% contained and has tragically killed two.
The Governor proclaimed an earlier state of emergency in Siskiyou County due to the McKinney Fire, which was sparked July 29. Earlier that month, a state of emergency had been proclaimed in Mariposa County as a result of the Oak Fire. CCA will continue to keep membership informed about state and federal responses to wildfires within the state. Additional information about these and other wildfire incidents can be found via Cal Fire and InciWeb.
SWRCB Updates Curtailments for Several Watersheds
Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Watershed
Effective last Thursday, the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) has scaled back curtailments on the Sacramento River watershed, with appropriative water rights with a priority date of 1947 or later remaining curtailed. Several Sacramento River tributaries have been further curtailed, including appropriative water rights for the Yuba River subwatershed with a priority date of 1928 or later, for the Bear River subwatershed with a priority date of 1942 or later and for the Putah Creek subwatershed with a priority date of 1945 or later.
All appropriative water rights within the San Joaquin River watershed have been curtailed. In addition to these watershed-wide curtailments, riparian water rights within the Calaveras River, Chowchilla River and Fresno River subwatersheds have been further curtailed.
Scott and Shasta River Watersheds
The recently released drought emergency regulation for the Scott and Shasta River watersheds includes an updated limit on livestock diversions from Sept. 1 through March 31. Diversion for minimum livestock watering – defined for cattle as 15 gallons per head per day – may still occur. For uncurtailed rights, diversion may not exceed ten times the minimum livestock watering amounts (e.g., 150 gallons per head per day for cattle). For curtailed water rights, diversion may not exceed the minimum livestock watering amount, except that the minimum amount may be doubled on days exceeding 90° (e.g., 30 gallons per head per day for cattle).
Russian River Watershed
Finally, last Thursday the SWRCB updated its curtailment statuses for water rights within the Russian River watershed, reducing the number of water rights curtailed within the watershed. Curtailment statuses can be viewed at the Russian River Drought Response webpage.
These curtailments are expected to continue through summer and the beginning of fall, depending on precipitation.
For questions about curtailment and suspension notices or how to comply, please contact the Rancher Technical Assistance Program at (916) 409-6902 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
CBCIA Accepting Applications for Seedstock Producer of the Year
Each year, the California Beef Cattle Improvement Association (CBCIA) accepts applications for the CBCIA Outstanding Seedstock and Commercial Producer of the Year Awards. These awards recognize progressive beef cattle breeders who use practical, scientifically accepted selection and management methods and integrate them into successful ranching operations.
The award rotates between honoring a producer or commercial producer each year. For 2022, CBCIA will honor an outstanding seedstock operation. Click here to download the application. Applications are due Oct. 1.
Winner(s) will be honored at appropriate CCA and CBCIA sponsored events and are eligible to be nominated (by CBCIA) for the National Beef Improvement Federation awards. To learn more about CBCIA and past award winners click here.
California’s 2021-22 Legislative Session Gavels to a Close
With legislative business technically extending past 1:00 a.m. Thursday morning, the California Legislature last week gaveled to a close at the end of its Wednesday session.
Among legislators’ priorities in the final days of session was passing the “Budget Bill Junior,” which amends the 2022-23 State Budget, as well as a slate of “budget trailer bills” – bills which make changes to state law necessary to implement the budget. For details of what was included in the 13 budget bills considered by the Legislature last week, see “California Legislature Enters Hectic Final Days of 2021-22 Session” in last week’s edition of Legislative Bulletin and stay tuned for the Your Dues Dollars at Work column in October’s California Cattleman magazine.
Legislators also considered last week a set of bills seeking to implement Governor Newsom’s “urgent proposals addressing climate change.” Legislators approved a measure to codify the State’s goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2045; a bill which directs the California Air Resources Board to issue regulations regarding carbon capture, utilization and sequestration; legislation directing the Natural Resources Agency to set “an ambitious range of targets for natural carbon sequestration” on natural and working lands through 2045; and a bill requiring new oil wells to be sited at least 3,200 feet from schools, parks and residences.
Not all of Newsom’s climate priorities advanced to his desk, however: AB 2133 (Quirk), which would have increased California’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction target to 55% below 1990 levels by 2030, fell four votes short of passage in the Assembly on Wednesday. Existing law sets the 2030 emissions target at 40% below 1990 levels.
Newsom has until the end of this month to sign or veto any bills sent to his desk in the final days of the Legislative Session. For a full recap of the 2022 legislative year, see the November edition of California Cattleman.
Hours of Service Exemptions for Livestock Haulers Extended Through October 15
On March 18, 2020, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issued an Expanded Emergency Declaration exempting livestock haulers from compliance with the federal Hours of Service rules that limit drive time. Under the Emergency Declaration, Hours of Service rest requirements remain in effect, meaning that once a driver returns to his or her “normal reporting location,” that individual must still receive a minimum of 10 hours of off-duty rest.
The Emergency Declaration has been extended on nine prior occasions, most recently through August 31. On Wednesday, the FMCSA again issued an extension of the modified Emergency Declaration, which continues the hours of service exemption through October 15.
The current Emergency Declaration applies to a limited class of freight, including livestock and finished livestock feed. Those operating under the exemption must report their reliance on the exemption shortly after the end of each month (more information regarding this reporting requirement can be found in a prior Legislative Bulletin report on the exemption).
In response to FMCSA’s initial March 2020 action, Governor Gavin Newsom issued an Executive Order also exempting haulers engaged in intrastate or interstate transportation from California’s Hours of Service regulations. California’s exemption remains in effect as long as FMCSA’s Declaration remains in effect.
CARB Imposes Zero-Emission Mandate for New Cars Sold Beginning in 2035
Late last month, the California Air Resources Board adopted an Advanced Clean Cars II regulation which requires all new cars and light-duty trucks sold in the state beginning in 2035 to be equipped with zero-emission engines. The zero-emission mandate will not impact vehicle owners of gas-powered vehicles purchased prior to 2035, nor does it apply to trucks with a gross vehicle weigh rating greater than 8,500 pounds, though Governor Newsom has signaled an intent “that 100 percent of medium- and heavy-duty vehicles in the State be zero-emission by 2045…where feasible.” For more information, see last week’s edition of Legislative Bulletin.
2022 CCA Internship Applications Now Available
Internship applications are open for the 2022 CCA/CCW Convention happening Nov. 30 – Dec. 1 at the Nugget Casino Resort in Sparks, Nev. Selected interns will help run CCA’s tradeshow booth, onsite registration and other behind the scenes tasks at the event, they will also get to attend select meetings of interest, general sessions and the tradeshow with complimentary lodging and registration. Additionally, the interns will get to interact with CCA leadership and staff, as well as industry leaders at the best attended meeting of the year. To apply please send a resume and cover letter to Maureen LaGrande at email@example.com by Monday, October 10, 2022, at 11:59pm PST. Applicant must be a young, regular or feeder member of the California Cattlemen’s Association and must be a current undergraduate, master, school of law or veterinary student attending or enrolled in a junior college, four-year college, university or law school (high school students are not eligible). Learn more about the event at calcattlemen.org/convention2022.
2022 CCA Scholarship Applications Now Available
Applications for the 2022 CCA Scholarships are being accepted now through October 1, 2022. CCA awarded $63,000 in scholarships to students studying agriculture, although scholarship amounts and quantities vary year to year. Current CCA members (producer, feeder or YCC) that are currently enrolled at a university or college are eligible to apply. Past recipients of her CCA scholarship program may also apply again this year. For a complete list of awards and to download the application visit calcattlemen.org/scholarships. Contact Maureen in the CCA office at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.